20 October 2017
Paul Penrose


Paul Penrose - Finextra

307Posts 1,340,984Views 246Comments
Trends in Financial Services

Trends in Financial Services

A community to discuss the future of financial services and any other interesting trends, strategies, ideas, views.

HSBC humbled by Facebook protest

30 August 2007  |  8022 views  |  0

Banking giant HSBC has been forced into an embarrassing u-turn over interest charges on graduate overdafts following a successful protest campaign on the Facebook social network organised by the National Union of Students. 

The rapidly proliferating campaign, called 'Stop the Great HSBC Graduate Rip-Off!', (see Finblog earlier this week), attracted 4000 members and generated reams of bad publicity for the bank. Students were angered by HSBC's decision to scrap interest-free overdrafts for university leavers and to charge interest at 9.9%.  

HSBC initially sought to tough it out but had to rethink its position as the Facebok protest gathered momentum, resulting in today's decision to freeze overdraft charges and repay fees deducted from account holders in August. 

The bank acknowledged the power of the online community in forcing the reversal.  

"We are a service-oriented organisation and we have to listen to our customers - that is a priority for us,” said a spokesman. "It's a good example of where a medium like Facebook has enabled customers to tell us something they feel strongly about.”

Despite the climb-down, HSBC will feel the sting from the protest for some time to come. Johnny Chatterton, a graduate of Leeds University and a customer for ten years, told the FT: "I don't trust them at all anymore, and won't bank with them in the future. But the success of our campaign shows how powerful Facebook can be."

TagsRetail banking

Comments: (0)

Comment on this story (membership required)

Latest posts from Paul

ANZ and Visa lose the plot

30 June 2011  |  6651 views  |  0 comments | recomends Recommends 0 TagsMobile & onlineRetail banking

Don't give up the day job...ever

20 May 2010  |  5872 views  |  0 comments | recomends Recommends 0 TagsTrade executionWholesale bankingGroupWhatever...

Now we are ten

19 April 2010  |  6260 views  |  3 comments | recomends Recommends 0 TagsRetail bankingWholesale banking

Finextra's Best of the Web

05 March 2010  |  5774 views  |  1 comments | recomends Recommends 0 TagsRetail bankingWholesale banking

The ATM was the last great financial innovation

25 February 2010  |  9854 views  |  8 comments | recomends Recommends 0 TagsRetail bankingWholesale bankingGroupFinance 2.0

Paul's profile

job title Head of Research
location London
member since 2007
Summary profile See full profile »
I'm responsible for editorial content and quality control across the full range of Finextra media.

Paul's expertise

Member since 2006
307 posts246 comments

Who's commenting on Paul's posts